Reason presents the three worst—and the three best—achievements of President Trump's first 100 days.
Third Worst Moment: Replace and Repeal FAIL.
Along with his pledge to build a wall on the southern border and deport illegal immigrants en masse, Trump's campaign was all about ramming through the "Repeal and Replace Obamacare Act," which would have cut red tape, gotten rid of the individual mandate, and created a true marketplace for medical insurance. Instead, thanks to the president's own lack of savvy and GOP dithering, it didn't even get a proper vote in Congress.
Third Best Moment: The nomination and confirmation of Neil Gorsuch.
The nomination of an intellectually powerful and highly respected jurist to replace the late Antonin Scalia on the Supreme Court demonstrated that President Trump isn't the flake that many critics figured him to be. Neil Gorsuch might not be libertarian, but he is, in the estimation of Georgetown Law's Randy Barnett, a serious thinker who believes that government power is and should be limited.
Second Worst Moment: The Country That Bombs Together.
The one action for which President Trump has received bipartisan praise was the bombing of a Syrian government air base to protest the alleged use of chemical weapons by the Assad regime. Even opposition leaders such as House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (Calif.) and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (N.Y.) signed on to a starkly humanitarian intervention that served no greater purpose than rallying voters here in America.
Second Best Moment: Deregulatory appointees at the FDA, FCC, and EPA.
There's no question that Trump has picked some terrible cabinet members—Attorney General Jeff Sessions has openly talked about ramping up the war on pot in states where it's legal, for instance. He also defends asset-forfeiture abuse and has hinted at reviving federal porn prosecutions, too. But picks such as Ajit Pai at the Federal Communications Commission, Scott Gottlieb at the Food and Drug Administration, and Scott Pruitt at the Environmental Protection Agency are serious deregulators who are already starting to prune back regulations that accomplish little but cost taxpayers and innovators lots of time, money, and resources.
Worst Moment: Muslim Travel Ban.
The president has issued two executive decrees calling for a moratorium on travel from several majority-Muslim countries and the suspension of America's refugee program. Both have been stayed by federal courts and it remains unclear if one will ever become the law of the land. Regardless it's anti-American to effectively establish a religious test for travelers and migrants here—and it also undermines attempts to reach out to the vast majority of Muslims who are the primary targets of Islamic fundamentalism.
Best Moment: He's Getting Real.
Every new president enters office thinking they can direct the course of human history via their pen or, in the case of Trump, Twitter feed. For all his bluster and lack of self-awareness, he's also learning that the world is more complicated than he reckoned. He's pushed back deadines for all sorts of projects, from funding for his stupid and useless immigration wall to a timeline for tax reform, which shows that he is living in the real world at least. To the extent he realizes that his best path forward is in cutting economic regulations rather than vilifying immigrants, renegotiating trade deals, and starting new wars, he'll not only be a better president—he'll create a better America too.
Written by Nick Gillespie. Produced by Paul Detrick and Alexis Garcia.
Black Bird—Primal Drive by Kevin MacLeod is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)
Kool Kats by Kevin MacLeod is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)